As children we all have huge emotions. You see it every day in toddlers, who become so overwhelmed they break down into a tantrum, completely out of control.
As they become older different types of emotions start to emerge. As well as joy, happiness, upset and anger they develop fear, apprehension, moodiness, anxiety, loneliness. These emotions can be as overwhelming to them as they were when they were a toddler. the difference is they have learned to behave “better”. Some may still have tantrums but many internalise their feelings and struggle to acknowledge and express them.
This week at Calm Caterpillars we explored the feelings that surface when we’re in bed. The children made monster masks, named them, talked about where they live and how they feel. I have encouraged them to welcome these monsters rather than fear or ignore them. We also sorted a variety of monster pictures and matched them with the emotions they may be expressing. Interestingly the monster I thought was angry, the children thought was excited. It reminded me of how important language and labelling is.
Franklin D Roosevelt is often quoted as saying,”You have nothing to fear but fear itself.” By giving their emotions a physical form and a bit of a back story the children were able to talk about their feelings much more easily.
So not so much taming of monsters as becoming friends with your monsters.
If you’d like to book a place for your child at West Wickham Calm Caterpillars on Thursdays at 4pm you can book here. Or why not grab a place at our special Easter workshop on 11th April at 10am.